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At Least 14 Killed in Mogadishu Fighting

At least 14 people, most of them civilians, have been killed in the latest fighting between Somali government forces and the insurgent group al-Shabab.

Witnesses say the sides exchanged artillery and gunfire in a battle that began late Sunday and stretched into Monday in northern Mogadishu.

Al-Shabab says it captured new territory in the fighting, while the government says it repelled the insurgents.

Bodies found

The head of Mogadishu's ambulance service says medics have found the bodies of 10 civilians killed in the clash. Reports from the city say several others were killed and that at least 40 people were wounded.

Al-Shabab and another insurgent group, Hizbul Islam, have been battling the government for control of the capital. The groups are trying to topple the leadership and set up a strict Islamic state.

Somalia has not had a functioning central government since 1991.

Lack of control

The current government has international backing but controls only a few areas of the capital with the support of a few thousand African Union peacekeepers.

Al-Shabab recently claimed responsibility for twin bombings in Uganda, which targeted people watching the World Cup final.

The group said it was avenging the death of Somali civilians at the hands of the African Union peacekeeping force in Somalia. Ugandan troops make up the bulk of the force.

Some information for this report was provided by AP and AFP.